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Books To Read: Best Graphic Novels:

October 2014

The range and ambition of comics today continue to surprise and impress, as my personally recommended titles prove again this month. Biographies of Marx and Stefan Zweig, a thrilling expansion of Richard McGuire’s seminal “Here” short story into a 320-page tour de force, a Jim Henson lost story rediscovered, the welcome returns of Euro-stars Winshluss, Schrauwen and Schuiten & Peeters, exciting upcoming talents and some vintage treasures reprinted, with a focus on comic-book women from the Golden Age - and even a horror yarn set in an Ikea-style furniture store and packaged like one of their catalogues!

Among so many delights, I want to highlight the important solo debut by Rob Davis, whose Don Quixote stands as one of the finest and wittiest literary adaptations into comics I’ve every enjoyed. In the footsteps of SelfMadeHero’s other break-out original graphic novels like Glynn Dillon’s The Nao of Brown, Ilya’s Room For Love, Oscar Zarate’s The Park and I.N.J Culbard’s Celeste, now The Motherless Oven looks like being one of the most unpredictable and provocative parables of the season, the arrival of Davis as a major complete auteur and visionary voice. Not to be overlooked! Clear some more shelf space, it’s another bumper crop this October…

Arsene Schrauwen
by Olivier Schrauwen

The publisher says:
Utopia comes with a price in this European cartoonist’s graphic novel debut inspired by his mid-century colonialist grandfather. In 1947, the author’s grandfather, Arsene Schrauwen, traveled across the ocean to a mysterious, dangerous jungle colony at the behest of his cousin. Together they would build something deemed impossible: a modern utopia in the wilderness — but not before Arsene falls in love with his cousin’s wife, Marieke. Whether delirious from love or a fever-inducing jungle virus, Arsene’s loosening grip on reality is mirrored by the graphic novel reader’s uncertainty of what is imagined or real by Arsene. This first full-length graphic novel from the critically-acclaimed Olivier Schrauwen is an engrossing, sometimes funny, slightly surreal and often beautiful narrative. 250pgs colour hardcover

Art Schooled
by Jamie Coe
Nobrow Press
$22.95 / £14.95

The publisher says:
Daniel Stope is a small-town guy with dreams of becoming an artist. His enrolment at art school and subsequent move to the city opens up a world of possibilities. Unsurprisingly, Daniel struggles with his newfound independence—the difficulties of big city dating and making new friends. Jamie Coe’s tale is a visually powerful graphic novel that covers familiar ground with an enthralling approach. Jamie Coe is a recent graduate from Central Saint Martins, London. He has worked on commissions for Foyles, illustrated political cartoons for the Gateway, and is the author of the short comic House of Freaks. 96pgs colour paperback

Barakamon Vol. 1
by Satsuki Yoshino
Yen Press

The publisher says:
For a certain reason, a handsome, young calligrapher by the name of Seishuu Handa uproots himself and moves to an island on the westernmost edge of Japan. “Sensei,” as he comes to be known, is a city boy through and through, and has never experienced rural life until now. And by the looks of it, he has much to learn! From navigating public roads by tractor to resigning himself to having his new digs commandeered by the local children as their new hangout, the list of Sensei’s hardships is shaping up to be long indeed! Here unfolds a heartfelt island comedy about a gruff on the outside, soft on the inside urbanite teacher and his new, unfailingly tolerant island neighbours! 208pgs B&W paperback

Doonesbury: Mel’s Story: Surviving Military Sexual Assault
by G. B. Trudeau
Andrews McMeel Publishing

The publisher says:
The fourth Doonesbury book focusing on the effects of combat on recent war veterans. The first time B.D. encounters command-rape survivor Melissa Wheeler in the waiting room at the VA Center, he has no idea what to make of the scowling former chopper mechanic. But in the months that follow, witnessing Mel’s pain and her healing process help him with his own, and B.D. ends up a staunch and encouraging ally. With the help of VA counselors Cora and Elias, Wheeler is able to reframe her experience and move forward to the point where she re-ups and re-deploys, though the trauma and betrayal continue to haunt her. She and battlebud Roz masterfully manage a perilous rescue op of a downed USO chopper, and in the new post-DADT world the now-out Roz and her now-superior (“That’s SERGEANT bitch to you!”) help wind down US ops in Afghanistan. Returning stateside, Mel’s final obstacle is her father’s cluelessness—and a widespread reluctance to hear the truth of her story. As always, Trudeau manages to find humor and humanity in even a tale of suffering, and sheds serious light on one of the most pressing and undermining problems in our military today. 128pgs part-colour paperback.

by Bianca Bagnarelli
Nobrow Press
$11.00/ £6.50

The publisher says:
Milo is twelve. The summer after his parents were involved in a fatal accident, Milo’s struggle with grief threatens to overwhelm him. He sees death everywhere. When a missing girl is found drowned, Milo thinks that seeing her will finally lift the veil of the great unknown. A moving parable in comic form, this unflinching coming-of-age story is the American debut of one of Europe’s finest young cartoonists. Bianca Bagnarelli was born in Milan, Italy. She is a graphic author and small press publisher. In 2010 Bagnarelli founded Delebile, which releases short comics by young artists. Part of the Nobrow 17x23 Collection. 24pgs colour comic book

Happy Stories About Well-Adjusted People
by Joe Ollman
Conundrum Press

The publisher says:
Ollmann has been called the best writer of short stories working in comics today. Featuring a lengthy introduction, this is the definitive collection of those stories. Although the term “graphic novel” has become widely accepted in the publishing industry and the culture at large, it describes long form works. This omnibus makes obvious that there is a need for a term to describe the short story version of the graphic novel. In the same way the short story has recently had a resurgence, winning many literary awards, so too the graphica version. Ollmann won the Doug Wright Award in 2007 for This Will All End in Tears, most of which is contained in this omnibus. The best stories from Chewing on Tinfoil are included, as well as two new stories, written just for this book. 260pgs B&W paperback

by Richard McGuire
Pantheon Books / Hamish Hamilton
$35.00 / £25.00

The publisher says:
Here is Richard McGuire’s unique graphic novel based on the legendary 1989 comic strip of the same name. Richard McGuire’s groundbreaking comic strip ‘Here’ was published under Art Spiegelman and Françoise Mouly’s editorship at RAW in 1989. Built in six pages of interlocking panels, dated by year, it collapsed time and space to tell the story of the corner of a room - and its inhabitants - between the years 500,957,406,073 BC and 2033 AD. The strip remains one of the most influential and widely discussed contributions to the medium, and it has now been developed, expanded and reimagined by the artist into this full-length, full-colour graphic novel - a must for any fan of the genre. Richard McGuire is a regular contributor to the New Yorker magazine. He has written and illustrated both children’s books and experimental comics. His work has appeared in The New York Times, McSweeney’s, Le Monde and Libération. He has written and directed two omnibus feature films, designed and manufactured his own line of toys, and is also the founder and bass player of the post-punk band Liquid Liquid. 320pgs colour hardcover

Chris Ware, author of Building Stories, says:
Personally, I think he’s a genius, transforming every medium he works within into his own peculiar personal language. What he gave every reader with ‘Here’ was an individual and unique way of looking at life . . . it was life-changing.

Horrorstör: A Novel
by Grady Hendrix
Quirk Books

The publisher says:
Something strange is happening at the Orsk furniture superstore in Cleveland, Ohio. Every morning, employees arrive to find broken Kjerring wardrobes, shattered Brooka glassware, and vandalised Liripip sofa beds—clearly, someone or something is up to no good. To unravel the mystery, five young employees volunteer for a long dusk-till-dawn shift—and they encounter horrors that defy imagination. Along the way, author Grady Hendrix infuses sly social commentary on the nature of work in the new twenty-first century economy. A traditional haunted house story in a contemporary setting (and full of current fears), Horrorstör comes conveniently packaged in the form of a retail catalog, complete with illustrations of ready-to-assemble furniture and other, more sinister accessories. We promise you’ve never seen anything quite like it! 256pgs colour paperback

In God We Trust
by Winshluss

The publisher says:
Five years after the magnificent Pinocchio (Knockabout, 2011), Winshluss returns with the hilarious In God We Trust. His multi-levelled retelling of The Bible revises the founding myths of the holy book. We are guided through the maze of the Old and New Testament by St. Franky, with a nose like a straw-berry from drinking altar wine and a sceptical attitude. With him, we visit the scenes of Scripture and believe it or not, this is not what we thought! A true spiritual journey, In God We Trust is an absurd epic with startling ranging of drawing on display. 104pgs colour hardcover

Jim Henson’s The Musical Monsters of Turkey Hollow
by Jim Henson, Jerry Juhl & Roger Langridge

The publisher says:
The lost screenplay by Jim Henson brought to life by Roger Langridge!
In the spring of 1968, Jim Henson and his longtime writing partner were working together to create an original Thanksgiving TV special called The Musical Monsters of Turkey Hollow, which was to be directed by Jim and feature original songs by Joe Raposo of Sesame Street fame. Henson went as far as building the puppets for the special, but no network committed to the project and the script was filed away in the Jim Henson Company Archives. After the success of Archaia’s Eisner Award-winning graphic novel Jim Henson’s Tale of Sand, we are proud to partner with the Jim Henson Company to bring to life another previously unknown piece of the Jim Henson Legacy. The only thing more exciting than finding the script for the project was securing the talents of the amazing Roger Langridge (writer and illustrator of the Eisner Award-winning Snarked) to adapt and illustrate the project. Eisner and Harvey-Award winner Roger Langridge is the mastermind behind Snarked and the beloved run of The Muppet Show comics, and now he gets to bring to life hilarious, never-before-seen puppet creations by Jim Henson in an oversized all-ages adventure. Turkey Hollow is a picturesque town where hundreds of years ago, unbeknownst to the citizens, a meteorite landed nearby a small brook on the outskirts of town. One Thanksgiving, while young Timmy Henderson practices his guitar, he’s accompanied by strange, unearthly, musical sounds. That meteorite wasn’t a rock at all but an egg holding seven furry, goofy monsters, each with a unique musical sound. After the initial shock, Timmy befriends the loveable creatures following him all around Turkey Hollow. Not everyone takes a liking to the visitors though and it’s up to Timmy to protect his new friends and save Thanksgiving. 96pgs colour hardcover

Lost Property
by Andy Poyiadgi
Nobrow Press
$11.00/ £6.50

The publisher says:
Gerald is just your regular everyday mailman. One day, having lost a precious and personal item, he visits his local lost and found. There he finds far more than he bargained for, because in this “self storage,” each and every one of Gerald’s lost possessions has been kept and contained. Andy Poyiadgi makes films by day and comics by night. He has directed trailers for Heinz, Ford, the Guardian, BBC, BAFTA, and The Sopranos. He has contributed to several anthologies, including Wu Wei and ink+PAPER. His recent comic, Teapot Therapy, was shortlisted for the Observer/Jonathan Cape/Comica Graphic Short Story Prize. Part of the Nobrow 17x23 Collection. 24pgs colour comic book

by Corinne Maier & Anne Simon
Nobrow Press
$19.95 / £13.99

The publisher says:
Karl Marx dreamt of a world free from exploitation, inequality, and unemployment. Growing up in a rapacious capitalist society, Marx sought to address the evils of the world through new ways of thinking. His solution? Revolution! Marx is the second in Corinne Maier and Anne Simon’s collection of graphic novels that explore the lives of some of history’s most controversial and outspoken figures. 72pgs colour hardcover

by James Harvey
Images Comics

The publisher says:
A young man decides to leave his college girlfriend after getting a new medical technique which drastically modifies the physical appearance of the human body in ways both beautiful and hideous. Will changing the outside change what’s within? The cult online comic is finally available in print. The print debut of UK writer/artist James Harvey, beautifully illustrated in the tradition of Jamie Hewlett and Katsuhiro Otomo. 32pgs oversized colour comic book.

Nelvana Of The Northern Lights
by Adrian Dingle

The publisher says:
Nelvana of the Northern Lights returns from the lost pages of Adrian Dingle’s Triumph Comics. Nelvana was one of the world’s very first superheroines, predating Wonder Woman by several months, and is among the ranks of the first Canadian superheroes to emerge after Canada placed an embargo on US luxury goods during WWII. First appearing in 1941, Nelvana was tasked with protecting Canada’s northern lands. Using the powers of the northern lights, Nelvana could fly at incredibly fast speeds, become invisible, and even turn into dry ice! She used her great powers to ward off Nazi invaders, shady fur traders, subterranean mammoth men, and interdimensional ether people. For the first time since her story ended in 1947, Nelvana’s complete adventures have been collected and reprinted in one single volume, with over 320-pages of artwork by her creator Adrian Dingle. Also featured is an Introduction by editors Hope Nicholson and Rachel Richey, and a Foreword/Afterword by Dr. Benjamin Woo and Michael Hirsh. 352pgs colour hardcover

On The Books: A Graphic Tale of Working Woes at NYC’s Strand Bookstore
by Greg Farrell
Microcosm Publishing

The publisher says:
On the Books is the firsthand comic strip account of the labour struggle at New York City’s legendary Strand bookstore in the summer of 2012. Told by Greg Farrell—an employee of the store who interviewed numerous other staff members—the book examines the motives and actions of those involved, including the management, the staff, the union local, and the people of New York City. Through interstitial comic portraits, Farrell gives voice to his comrades, who often share a nuance of the story that would have otherwise gone overlooked, and provide a depth of opinion and fairness to accompany Farrell’s often very personal interpretation of events. The book explores at once the inner workings of our national retail environment, the struggles as a young working person, and the current state of the book trade. 160pgs B&W paperback

by Emma Chichester-Clark
Jonathan Cape

The publisher says:
“Hello. My name is Plum and I’m a whoosell - that’s whippet mixed with Jack Russell and poodle. I especially like swimming, leaping, catching, and croissants, and my favourite fragrance is fox poo. I live with Emma, an illustrator, and Rupert. My sister, Liffey, lives nearby. Over the last year I’ve been keeping a diary. Emma has helped with the pictures, but the words are all mine.” Since 2012 Emma Chichester Clark has been delighting thousands of followers with her blog Plumdog, which records the day to day life of Plum, her dog, in Plum’s own words and Emma’s irresistible illustrations. This book collects Plum’s best pages in book form. It will bring cries of delighted recognition from anyone who has ever owned a dog and, dare one say it, charm the pants off even those who strongly prefer cats. 160pgs colour hardcover

Some Comics
by Stephen Collins
Jonathan Cape

The publisher says:
Here are some comics by Stephen Collins. Or, to be precise, a little over 100 comics by Stephen Collins.They constitute your opportunity to: a) discover what plastic bags really think about; b) learn the true identity of Kim Jong-Un’s life coach; and c) have everything ruined by the internet. Enjoy! 120pgs colour hardcover

Street View
by Pascal Rabaté

The publisher says:
A brilliant homage to Alfred Hitchcock’s Rear Window, this unique accordion book, which opens in two directions, provides a series of 20 tableaux of a street scene as it evolves across a single day and night. Providing a multitude of ongoing stories that develop across both sides of the book, readers witness the lives of single people, couples, and families as well as stories of love, separation, and possibly even murder. 48pgs colour hardcover

by Darryl Cunningham
Myriad Editions

The publisher says:
An eloquent and devastating analysis in comic-book form of our economic world - and what makes us tick. Darryl Cunningham’s latest graphic investigation takes us to the heart of free-world politics and the financial crisis, as he traces the roots of our age of selfishness to the rightwing thinkers of the previous century in three fascinating chapters - Ayn Rand, Supercrash, and The Age of Selfishness. He takes a fascinating look at research carried out on the psychological differences between liberals and conservatives and suggests how their traits have defined them. 224pgs colour paperback

The Art of Modesty Blaise
by Peter O’Donnell, Jim Holdaway & various artists
The Book Palace

The publisher says:
Modesty Blaise, the tough and enigmatic character created by Peter O’Donnell, made her international debut on Monday 13th May 1963 in a newspaper strip story illustrated by Jim Holdaway. Her adventures have continued until the last story in 2001 and have been syndicated worldwide. On Jim Holdaway’s sudden death in 1970 the artwork was taken up by Enric Badia Romero. In 1978 the artwork was taken up by John Burns for a year, then by Pat Wright for nine months. In May 1980 the fifth artist was introduced, Neville Colvin, who produced over 1,500 strips. Colvin retired in 1986 and Romero continued again until the very last strip in 2001. This marvellous catalogue showcases over 160 original artworks for sale, reproduced here in the finest detail. Each individual scan of the original art shown in this book was carefully taken to optimise its reproduction on the printed page and to retain the look and feel of the artist’s detailed pen and ink artwork.  Limited edition of 600 copies worldwide. 88pgs B&W paperback

The Art Of The Simon And Kirby Studio
by Mark Evanier
Abrams ComicArts
$60.00 / £40.00

The publisher says:
The names Joe Simon and Jack Kirby are synonymous with comic books and together their partnership (which began in the 1940s) ushered in the Golden Age of comics and greatly influenced everything that followed. The Simon and Kirby Studio created such memorable characters as Captain America and the Sandman and were the first to publish in comic books the genres of western, crime, horror and romance (later appropriated by Roy Lichtenstein for his pop art paintings). Over the course of three decades together they wrote and illustrated several hundred comics, many of which have never been reprinted since they were first published in the 1940s and ‘50s. This oversized volume of 386 pages will be organised by genre and cover all aspects of their amazing career, with commentary by Mark Evanier, the foremost authority on the work of Simon and Kirby. All of the images have been photographed from the original art in Joe Simon’s private archive, showcasing the seminal work of Simon and Kirby and their artistry as it has never been before. 386pgs colour hardcover.

The Last Days Of Stefan Zweig
by Laurent Seksik & Guillaume Sorel
Salammbo Press

The publisher says:
A ship slices through the waves of the Atlantic ocean. On board is Stefan Zweig, the renowned Austrian writer, and his second wife, Lotte. They have left New York and are bound for Brazil; President Vargas has just announced that he will welcome European Jews who have been forced into exile. Will they find peace there? On 22 February 1942, Stefan Zweig and Lotte committed suicide in Petropolis, putting an end to their wanderings. Their lives during these last few months in Brazil are the subject of this graphic novel, an adaptation of the novel by Laurent Seksik. 91pgs colour paperback.

The Leaning Girl
by Benoît Peeters & François Schuiten
Alaxis Press

The publisher says:
After a freak accident on the Star Express roller coaster, 13 year-old Mary Von Rathen begins to lean. Doctors can not help her, so she is sent by her selfish mother and hen-pecked father to a private school in Sodrovni. Mary escapes and joins the Robertson Circus where she remains for several years, until she hears from newspaper editor, Stanislas Sainclair, that a scientist, Axel Wappendorf, might be able to help her. Wappendorf is working on a rocket to reach a planet that could hold the secret to Mary’s trouble. Meanwhile an artist, Augustin Desombres, has run away from the busy world and buys an empty building on the High Plains of Aubrac in the French countryside. He begins painting murals of strange globes. Now as a young woman, Mary decides to join Wappendorf in the rocket. On the alien planet, they discover an area with many globes, where she has a chance meeting with the artist. Winner of the coveted Gaiman Award as the No. 1 translated foreign comic book series published in Japan in 2013, this story of perseverance and a young girl’s search for love has been translated from its original French into ten languages. Author and publisher Stephen D. Smith has now translated The Leaning Girl into English. It features an introduction by Karen Green, Graphic Novel Librarian at Columbia University. The hefty book measures 9.25” x 11.625” and .75” thick. Printed on beautiful art papers and cased in a softcover binding with reinforced flaps, the quality of the book itself is only outweighed by the material inside. 176pgs B&W paperback

The Lonesome Go
by Tim Lane

The publisher says:
This is a collection of “existential Americana” (in the vein of Edward Hopper) short comics. Tim Lane continues his exploration of the Great American Mythological Drama that began with his first book, the critically acclaimed Abandoned Cars. This collection of stories is broadly linked together by the experience of wandering – both literally and figuratively. With compelling verisimilitude, the lives of his characters are depicted by way of rich mixtures of obscure myths and documented facts, dreams and reality, belief and disbelief, throughout a haunted landscape populated by the ghosts of a complex and rich fictional tapestry. You’ll witness a young man’s dubious quest to discover the myth of the protagonist from an obscure vintage comic strip; encounter sociopathic hobos in boxcars and misled young men whose facial pores sprout worms and who throw up babies into gas station toilets; visit modern “Hoovervilles”; and experience the life and death of an undocumented immigrant bookstore doorman, former boxer, and expert hustler. 296pgs B&W and colour paperback with two fold-outs.

The Mammoth Book Of Cult Comics
edited by Ilya
Running Press / Robinson
$17.95 / £10.99

The publisher says:
Compiled by comic artist ILYA, whose stories are published in the US (Marvel, DC, Dark Horse), Japan (Kodansha) and Europe, The Mammoth Book of Cult Comics brings together for the first time in a single volume lost classics from recent decades of underground and independent British and American comic strip art. It includes the miraculous-in-the-mundane diary comics of John Welding (Goathland), and Paul O’Connell’s chilling yet darkly funny cut-ups, The Sound of Drowning. Also Through the Habitrails, the little-known masterpiece by Jeff Nicholson. A chance to catch up on previously unseen hidden gems. 496pgs B&W paperback.

Contents (un order of appearance) : Hummingbird by Gregory Benton; Blues by Eddie Campbell; The House by Amir Idrizovic; Through The Habitrails by Jeff Nicholson; Calico County by John Bagnall; Goathland by John Welding; Aunt Connie and The Plague of Beards by Jonathan Edwards; Tick-Tock Follies & Murphy the Lizard by Chris Butler and Chris Hogg; Walking with Melanie Klein by Susan Catherine and Oscar Zarate; Lee Butler by Peter Rigg and Paul ‘Mooncat’ Schroeder; Sadist by Dom Morris; Happy Daze and Charlie Parker by Paul O’Connell; Les Peintres Maudits by Simon Gane; These Fists Fly by Daniel Locke; Dear Robert and Partner by Paul Rainey; Too Dark To See by Julia Gfrörer; Jessica of the Schoolyard by Karl Wills; and Vague Cities by Tomasz Kaczynski. Plus one page comics by: Andy Robert, Steve Whitaker, Howard Stangroom, Eddie Campbell, Pete Martin and Ilya.

The Motherless Oven
by Rob Davis
$19.95 / £12.99

The publisher says:
In Scarper Lee’s world, parents don’t make children—children make parents. Scarper’s father is his pride and joy, a wind-powered brass construction with a billowing sail. His mother is a Bakelite hairdryer. In this world it rains knives, and household appliances have souls. There are also no birthdays—only deathdays. Scarper’s deathday is just three weeks away, and he clings to the mundane repetition of his life at home and high school for comfort. Rob Davis’s dark graphic novel is an odyssey through a bizarre, distorted teenage landscape. When Scarper’s father mysteriously disappears, he sets off with Vera Pike (the new girl at school) and Castro Smith (the weirdest kid in town) to find him. Facing home truths and knife storms at every turn, will Scarper even survive until his deathday? 160pgs B&W paperback

The Secret History Of Wonder Woman
by Jill Lepore

The publisher says:
A riveting work that reveals the origin of one of American popular culture’s most iconic figures - a story that hides within it not only a fascinating family saga but a crucial history of twentieth-century feminism, from the author of the National Book Award finalist Book of Ages. Wonder Woman, created in 1941, is the most popular female superhero of all time. Aside from Superman and Batman, no superhero has lasted as long or commanded so vast and wildly passionate a following. In the more than seven decades since she first appeared, her comic books have never been out of print. In years of interviews and archival research, Harvard historian and New Yorker staff writer Jill Lepore has uncovered an astonishing trove of documents, including the never-before-seen private papers of William Moulton Marston, Wonder Woman’s creator. Lepore has discovered that, from Marston’s days as a Harvard undergraduate, he was influenced by early suffragists and feminists, starting with the British suffragist Emmeline Pankhurst, who was banned from speaking on campus in 1911, when Marston was a freshman. In the 1920s, Marston and his wife brought into their home, as Marston’s mistress, the niece of Margaret Sanger, one of the most influential figures of the twentieth century. The Marston family story - a house of one man, three women, and four children - is a story of drama, intrigue, and irony. In the 1930s, Marston and Sanger’s niece together wrote a regular column for Family Circle celebrating conventional family life, even as they pursued a life of extraordinary nonconformity. No less fascinating is Marston’s role as the inventor of the lie detector. Internationally known as an expert on truth, he lived a life of secrets -only to spill them on the pages of the Wonder Woman comics he began writing in 1941. The Secret History of Wonder Woman is a tour de force of intellectual and cultural history, explaining not only the mysterious origins of the world’s most famous female superhero, but solving some of the most vexing puzzles in the American past. Wonder Woman, Lepore argues, is the missing link in the history of the struggle for women’s rights - a chain of events that begins with the women’s suffrage campaigns of the early 1900s and ends with the troubled place of feminism a century later. 448pgs B&W hardcover

Chris Ware, author of Building Stories, says:
“An absolutely unputdownable book. The life history of polymath charlatan and/or genius (I couldn’t ever decide) William Moulton Marston, who worked his way through law, movie scenarios, lie detection, ménages a trois, free love, BDSM and polygamy before creating the first feminist super-person, had me saying ‘wow’ practically every other page. And that’s not even mentioning the tough-as-nails women he exalted, lifted from and, uh, shared, who make up the molten core of this newly-revealed story. Rocketing from the suffragism of the 1910s to the ERA of the 1970s on a wave of home-spun pop culture righteousness, this story’s head-spinning weirdness ultimately makes you question your own accomplishments, aims, and - almost like a great modern novel - your real motives.”

Vixens, Vamps & Vipers: Lost Villainesses of Golden Age Comics
by Mike Madrid
Exterminating Angel Press

The publisher says:
Between the covers of Vixens, Vamps & Vipers, fans will rediscover the original bad girls of comics—as fierce and full of surprises as they were when the comic book industry was born. From murderous Madame Doom to He-She, dubbed by io9 as “the most unsung comic book villain ever,” Mike Madrid resurrects twenty-two glorious evildoers in fully reproduced comics and explores the ways they both transcend and become ensnared in a web of cultural stereotypes. Among the deadly femme fatales, ruthless jungle queens, devious secret agents, double-dealing criminal masterminds, and gender-bending con artists are some of the very first women of color in comics. These women may have been overlooked in the annals of history, but—like their superheroine counterparts in Divas, Dames & Daredevils—their influence, on popular culture and the archenemies that thrill us today, is unmistakable. Mike Madrid is the author of Divas, Dames & Daredevils and The Supergirls, an NPR “Best Book To Share With Your Friends” and American Library Association Amelia Bloomer Project Notable Book. A San Francisco native and lifelong fan of comic books and popular culture, Madrid also appears in the documentary Wonder Women! The Untold Story of American Superheroines. 240pgs B&W paperback.

Zenith: Phase One
by Grant Morrison & Steve Yeowell

The publisher says:
The all-time classic is back! Berlin, 1945: The allies unleashed the second world war hero Maximan upon the German super soldier Masterman. Maximan’s defeat was only kept secret by the nuclear bomb which destroyed both men. Forty-plus years later, and twenty years after a generation of ‘60s British superpowered heroes came and went, the teenage pop star Zenith is the only superhuman left - and his only interest is in women, drugs, alcohol and fame. So when he is contacted about the threat from the many-angled ones and the impending destruction of our world, his first reaction is to steer well clear. But the superhumans of the past have other plans… 112pgs B&W hardcover

Posted: July 29, 2014


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